Julie Hambleton
Julie Hambleton
February 16, 2024 ·  4 min read

Why Does Some Store-Bought Ice Cream Not Melt? A Mother’s Experiment Has The Internet Asking Questions

A rather peculiar story about Walmart ice cream bars not melting went viral, sparking widespread curiosity and raising questions about the nature of store-bought ice cream sandwiches. While the story may have originated several years ago, you can still find influencers, health bloggers, and experts discussing this phenomenon online. The question remains: Do WalMart ice cream sandwiches not melt, and if not, why? Should you be avoiding ice cream sandwiches altogether? These are the facts.

The Original Story: The Ice Cream Sandwich That Didn’t Melt

The story revolves around a mother of two young children named Christie Watson. One day, she noticed an uneaten ice cream sandwich left outside on her patio table. To her amazement, even after 12 hours and an 80-degree heat, the ice cream sandwich had barely melted. Intrigued by this phenomenon, she observed the packaging, which claimed it was made of “ice cream” rather than “artificial ice cream.” Watson decided to experiment by leaving another sandwich outside overnight, only to find the same result the following morning. Perplexed and concerned, she began questioning the ingredients of store-bought ice cream sandwiches.

“What am I feeding to my children?” she told WCPO News she asked herself, concerned and perplexed.

Explaining Why Some Store-Bought Ice Cream Doesn’t Melt

To understand why certain store-bought ice cream sandwiches do not melt as quickly as homemade or premium counterparts, we must delve into the ingredients and manufacturing processes. Walmart, the brand in question, responded to the viral incident by stating that ice cream melts based on the ingredients, particularly the amount of cream it contains. Ice cream with a higher cream content tends to melt at a slower rate, which explains why Walmart’s Great Value ice cream sandwiches maintained their structure. 

“Ice cream melts based on the ingredients, including cream,” Walmart spokeswoman Danit Marquardt said in an email to the Huffpost. “Ice cream with more cream will generally melt at a slower rate, which is the case with our Great Value ice cream sandwiches.” 

Upon investigating the ingredients, Business Insider made it clear that Walmart’s ice cream sandwiches also included other ingredients, including corn syrup, guar gum, and cellulose gum. These additives, commonly used as stabilizers and thickeners, can contribute to the slower melting observed in these products. Comparatively, premium ice cream brands like Haagen Dazs contain only cream, milk, sugar, eggs, and vanilla, without any additional gums or corn syrup.

It’s An Ice Cream Sandwich Thing

While we can be quick to vilify WalMart and their ice cream sandwiches, it is important to note that every ice cream sandwich, no matter the brand, has some of these ingredients to varying extents. This is because unlike regular ice cream that you buy in cartons or other ice cream products, sandwiches need to mold into and maintain their sandwich shape. Without these additives, manufacturers wouldn’t achieve getting these sandwich shaped desserts from their facilities to you, still in-tact. Moreover, these ingredients aren’t necessarily dangerous and are found in nature.

It’s important to note that while store-bought ice cream sandwiches may have a slower melting rate, they still comply with FDA guidelines and are considered just as healthy as other ice cream options. They often contain less fat, making them a more waistline-friendly choice.

Homemade Ice Cream Sandwich Recipe

For those looking to enjoy an ice cream sandwich with a recipe that avoids excessive ingredients and melts easily, we recommend trying this homemade ice cream sandwich recipe from Make Your Meals:


  • Chocolate cake mix
  • Eggs
  • Vegetable oil
  • Vanilla ice cream (premium or homemade)


  1. Preheat the oven and prepare the chocolate cake mix according to the package instructions.
  2. Spread the batter evenly on a baking sheet and bake as directed. Allow the cake to cool completely.
  3. Once cooled, cut the cake into rectangular shapes to serve as the cookie part of the ice cream sandwich.
  4. Take a scoop of your choice of vanilla ice cream and place it between two cake slices.
  5. Optionally, roll the sides of the ice cream sandwich in crushed cookies, sprinkles, or chocolate chips.
  6. Place the finished ice cream sandwiches in the freezer until firm.

The Bottom Line

While the viral story about Walmart ice cream bars not melting caused a stir, a scientific understanding of the ingredients and manufacturing processes provides us with a factual explanation. Store-bought ice cream sandwiches, such as the ones in question, contain stabilizers and additional gums that slow down the melting process. However, it’s crucial to note that these products still meet FDA guidelines and can be a healthier alternative due to their lower fat content. For those who prefer an ice cream sandwich that melts easily and want to avoid excessive ingredients, experimenting with homemade recipes like the one provided can be a delightful option. Ultimately, the choice between store-bought and homemade ice cream sandwiches comes down to personal preference and dietary considerations.


  1. Why don’t ice cream sandwiches melt anymore?WCPO. John Matarese. July 15, 2014.
  2. Walmart’s Ice Cream Sandwiches Don’t Melt In The Sun.” Huffpost. Janie Campbell. July 25, 2014.
  3. The Real Reason Walmart Ice Cream Sandwiches Don’t Melt.” Youtube. Mashed
  4. Homemade Ice Cream Sandwich Recipe – A Great Summer Treat!.” Make Your Meals